Writers Uncensored: Lucille Clifton and Sonia Sanchez

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“To love yourself so much you don’t wanna exploit anybody. Can you imagine not wanting to exploit anyone?” says Sonia Sanchez in her lecture to students in this 1991 episode of Writers Uncensored presented by the Lannan Foundation. This vintage episode features Sanchez and Lucille Clifton reading from their work and talking about their respective paths as poets.

Lucille Clifton: A Poet’s Life and Legacy

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“This is a woman, whose great-great-grandmother was a slave from the West African Kingdom of Dahomey, now the Republic of Benin. A woman who went on to be one of the most celebrated artists of her lifetime,” narrates Janice Harrington in this mini-documentary “Lucille Clifton: A Poet’s Life and Legacy,” produced by BOA Editions and Hunger Media.

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Lucille Clifton on Poetry

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“For me, poetry is a way of living in the world.” In this vintage video from the Poetry Breaks series, Lucille Clifton reflects on what poetry is and how it is not about answers, but rather questions. The Academy of American Poets has partnered with Leita Luchetti, who produced and directed the series in the late 1980s and early 1990s, to bring back these videos.

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Afaa Michael Weaver

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“I see myself in the shadows of a leaf.” Afaa Michael Weaver reads his poem “Self Portrait” and Lucille Clifton’s poem “My Dream About God” for the P.O.P. series, which was shot and edited by Rachel Eliza Griffiths in partnership with the Academy of American Poets. Weaver’s poetry collection Spirit Boxing (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2017) is featured in Page One in the March/April issue of Poets & Writers Magazine.

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Lucille Clifton

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Blessing the Boats: A Tribute to Lucille Clifton, a celebration of the late poet's life and work on the occasion of the posthumous publication of her Collected Poems by BOA Editions, was held on February 21 and featured readings by poets Sherman Alexie, Tina Chang, Toi Derricotte, Michael Dickman, Timothy Donnelly, Cornelius Eady, Thomas Sayers Ellis, Nick Flynn, Tonya Foster, Rachel Eliza Griffiths, Marie Howe, Dante Micheaux, Sharon Olds, and Tracy K. Smith.

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